I (Carolyn) would like to take a moment to puff up my chest a second here and claim responsibility for putting these two together. I really didn’t… I guess… but I kind of did! So I’m claiming it. I first met Stephanie in super early 2012 when she hired me to take portraits of her for her website. We don’t usually take work like this, but I kinda fell in love with her humor and attitude and took her on, we took awesome pictures, the end. Only it wasn’t the end! She also used those pictures on her online dating profile… and Matt saw them. :) SO I’M TOTALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS, RIGHT!? Right!! :)

Matt saw them, also met her, and also presumably fell in love with her humor and attitude. Only instead of taking her on for a portrait session, he proposed, they got married at Marbles, and here we were a little while later shooting their wedding. :) There was a brief period of getting ready, a brief ceremony, brief portraits, then a whole lotta reception with… wait for it… wait for it… breakfast for dinner. This, my dear readers, was the best thing I’ve ever heard of in terms of food at a reception. The even better part is that there were celiacs in her family so there were gluten-free pancakes for us!! Gluten-free pancakes with freakin’ Reese’s Pieces in them! And bacon! And omelets! And cranberry juice! I never write about (or blog pictures of) the food at weddings but I had to for this one because this was the best thing I’d ever seen and some of you pondering what to eat for next year should probably take notes because who doesn’t love breakfast? Evil people, that’s who.

Anyway – we were so honored to be asked to do this wedding. It’s really cool when you photograph someone and they keep bringing you back. :) We met Matt at the wedding and LOVED HIM. Almost as much as the Reese’s Pieces in our gluten-free pancakes. Well, maybe more. ;) He treats Stephanie like gold and you can see that he really loves her. They’re adorable together and we had an awesome time at their wedding. Congratulations, you two, and don’t forget what pictures started all this. ;) :P

Date: June 8, 2013

Ceremony and Reception Venue: Marbles Kids Museum // Raleigh, NC

First Dance Song: “Somewhere Beyond the Sea” – Frank Sinatra

How You Met: Online at OKCupid.com

Interesting Bride Fact: Fierce competitor and once ROBBED of $20 by the Plinko machine at Frankie’s!

Interesting Groom Fact: Foremost expert of the heel-toe downshift, which the bride finds utterly sexy in action.

Honeymoon Destination: Cruise boating to Alaska! Then living it up on the Columbia Gorge!

Vendor Credits: Officiant – Ingrid Weber Sagula | DJ – Ken Holmes | Florist – Purple Poppy | Cake – Blue Moon | Caterer – Rocky Top Hospitality | Hair/Makeup – Makeup For Your Day

Our favorite getting ready spot is always the couple’s own house. We really like seeing other peoples’ houses, for one thing, as it tells you a lot about them. This is always substantially more relaxed, for another thing, especially if they get ready in the same house at the same time. But the third and most important reason why our favorite getting ready spot is the couple’s own house is that we’re typically surrounded by cats or dogs who make everything better for cute, furry, obvious reasons.

There were 3 cats in this house, but only one visible, unhidden cat who had taken a fond liking to Andrea’s wedding dress. The dog’s name is Sweet Penny Scoot Scoots, age 4. She’s possibly won the award for the most nervous flower girl ever, and we’ve seen a lot of nervous flower girls. She was won over eventually with treats and a bow and walked bravely down the aisle for her very doting parents, Andrea and Mark.

Andrea and Mark were married at Mark’s uncle’s house and had their ceremony officiated by Mark’s other uncle. The ceremony was the first we’ve attended to mention Tupac and a vow to “seek help before quitting the marriage,” and was clearly the best ceremony ever. Family threw Hersey Kisses at them afterward (no dresses were harmed) and the DJ actually still spun real records with a set list that was epic and reminiscent of every 90s roller skating party I’ve ever attended (in a good way). They drove off at the end of the night to Mojo’s where their pictures are up on the wall 3 times for eating hamburgers. :)

Date: May 4, 2013

Ceremony and Reception Venue: Private Residence // Raleigh, NC

Andrea’s Occupation: Massage Therapist

Mark’s Occupation: Superintendent

How You Met: Through a friend at the Pour House

Honeymoon Destination: Costa Rica

Vendor Credits: Officiant – Dr. Bobby Wineburg | DJ – Aharon Segal of DJ Gonzo | Caterer – Food Simply Fresh with Kelly Delaire | Hair/Makeup – Amanda Daniels

The South is normally a bundle of sunshiney cheer, but this winter has been rough. And by “rough” I mean in the 30s and 40s and a lot of rain. That’s pretty “freaking awesome!” when you live in the north, but it’s atypically cold and wet for North Carolina. Unfortunately Kirsten and Michael’s wedding day was no exception to the “ugh” that’s been this winter here – cold and rainy.

But – and prepare yourselves for me to get totally cheesy right now – this couple has been a great ray of sunshine for us. Ohhh! So cheesy, but so true. They’ve been great. Genuinely nice people whose love is very evident for each other and the people around them. Kirsten bought me a scarf to say thank you before their wedding because she’s the sweetest girl ever. I took a few pictures of Michael staring at Kirsten in the most adorable way possible during the ceremony while their witnesses were signing their marriage license. Finally, just when I thought they were too cute, Kirsten’s dad gave a speech: Kirsten and her family are from Zimbabwe, where it’s traditional for a groom to pay a Labola to the bride’s parents in exchange for their daughter. It’s typically in cash or cattle. So Michael gave Kirsten’s parents a large teddy-bear shaped container filled with animal crackers.

When you’re looking at how cute they are, keep reminding yourself that Kirsten not only made her wedding cake, but her wedding dress. Yes, the whole thing. I still have my mom sew buttons on my coat when they fall off, so consider that.

Date: February 23, 2013

Ceremony Venue: Jones Chapel at Meredith College // Raleigh, NC

Reception Venue: The Pavilions at the Angus Barn // Raleigh, NC

First Dance Song: “Green Eyes” – Cold Play

Kirsten’s Occupation: Sommelier

Michael’s Occupation: Doctor

How You Met: Wine Tasting

Interesting Bride Fact: Kirsten is a Zimbabwean trillionaire!

Interesting Groom Fact: Michael had to pay lebola (African brideprice)

Honeymoon Location: Shh! It’s a secret!

Vendor Credits: Officiant – Rufus Massengill // Band – The Dickens // Cake – Kirsten Holshausen, yay! // Caterer – The Angus Barn // Hair – Dani Begley // Makeup – Kirsten Holshausen